World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Competiveness Report: JSE maintains top position for fifth consecutive year 

Johannesburg, 4 September 2014. The World Economic Forum (WEF) has ranked South Africa first among 144 countries in regulation of securities exchanges for the fifth consecutive year.

South Africa was ranked first out of a 144 countries in the WEF Global Competiveness Report 2014-2015 for both the regulation of its securities exchange and the auditing and reporting standards to which local companies must adhere. The report was released earlier today. 

“The JSE is honoured by this accolade. As an exchange we continue to strive to provide investors and issuers with a safe and credible environment in which to trade, list and invest,” says John Burke, Director: Issuer Regulation at the JSE. 

The Report also ranked South Africa third in the ability to raise finance through the local equity market, third in terms of the effectiveness of corporate boards and second in protecting the rights of minority shareholders. Burke says the country’s excellence in regulatory standards speaks of a sound working relationship between JSE and its regulator, the Financial Services Board (FSB). 

Burke says South Africa has a well-developed local investment community and high foreign participation in financial markets. “Regulatory standards cannot be viewed as a set of rules to be drafted and then applied blindly in years to come. Regulation needs to be adjusted and updated constantly according to a changing environment. The JSE works hard to maintain high standards in both formulating and implementing the regulation of our exchange.” 
Released annually in September, the report rates countries according to 12 pillars or sets of criteria. These include quality of infrastructure and institutions, efficiency, market sophistication as well as capacity for innovation. Regulation of securities exchanges falls under the eighth pillar for financial market development. 
The Johannesburg Stock Exchange is based in South Africa where it has operated as a market place for the trading of financial products for 125 years. It connects buyers and sellers in equity, derivative and debt markets. The JSE is one of the top 20 exchanges in the world in terms of market capitalisation and is a member of the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE). The JSE offers a fully electronic, efficient, secure market with world class regulation, trading and clearing systems, settlement assurance and risk management. 

Issued by:
Mari Blumenthal 
H+K Strategies South Africa 
Tel: +27 11 463 2198 

JSE contact: 
Andre Visser
General Manager: Issuer Regulation
JSE Limited